Support Local Journalism. Join Riverfront Times Press Club.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Saint Louis University Resorts to Fake Owls to Battle a Very Real Crow Problem

Posted By on Tue, Feb 23, 2010 at 11:07 AM

Life is imitating art at SLU.
  • Life is imitating art at SLU.
Saint Louis University is inundated with hundreds -- possibly thousands -- of crows. The ravens are coating the campus with bird crap and proving to be a real menace for maintenance workers assigned to clean up the mess.

"The cars in the back of the [Marchetti parking] lot are loaded with bird feces," maintenance worker Terry Palmisano recently told the student paper The University News. "I have been here 31 years and I have never seen so many [crows]. At night there are hundreds, and it is freaky when they are flying all over the place."

Meanwhile, a biologist at the university says that urban areas -- with their slightly warmer temperatures and abundant food -- make ideal roosting areas for the birds.

"Nothing is unusual about it, this is a neat phenomena," Thomas Valone tells the U News. "The West Nile Virus hit the crows hard and their roosts declined in the last three to four years. Ten years ago, there were thousands of crows around campus and it appears that their population has recovered."

In an effort to scare off the birds, SLU maintenance workers say they will soon install two life-sized Great Horned Owl decoys with four-foot wing spans. And if that doesn't do the trick, the university could use noise or even poison to scare and/or kill the creatures.

'Cause, you know, you'd hate for this to happen to the schoolchildren...



Tags: , ,

Support Local Journalism.
Join the Riverfront Times Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the Riverfront Times Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

September 22nd, 2021

View more issues

Newsletters

Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.

Best Things to Do In St. Louis

© 2021 Riverfront Times

Website powered by Foundation